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Article posted: 5/4/2013 5:00 AM

The Soapbox

By

Preckwinkle warms to our suburbs:

On Tuesday, Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle attended a luncheon in Palatine to speak to Northwest suburban business leaders, and on Thursday she turned up in Schaumburg to talk about upcoming road projects. We're not sure what to make of the sudden attention, but we're always glad when she makes it out of the city.

Moving toward peace:

We applaud two groups in Elgin that are working to break down unfair stereotypes about Muslims. They have planned a forum, "Who Is My Islamic Neighbor?" on May 19 at Elgin Community College. Events like this and one in Hanover Park last year are small steps toward unity and understanding.

Will diversity matter?

After he's sworn in as Arlington Heights village president next week, Tom Hayes will be appointing a replacement for himself as trustee. Given that Carol Blackwood is the only woman on the board, we hope Hayes gives extra consideration to gender.

Go to the mat, Coach:

Former wrestling coach -- and ex-U.S. House Speaker -- Dennis Hastert of Plano has a message for state and federal lawmakers: Push to get wrestling back in the Olympics. It's about "ordinary people being able to do extraordinary things," he said. Illinois listened. Will the International Olympic Committee?

Cool idea:

They're the hottest team in Chicago, yet the Blackhawks never seem to stop thinking bigger. Now they've landed an outdoor game at Soldier Field next March against the Pittsburgh Penguins and superstar Sidney Crosby. Great move -- and don't worry about the temperature. It was cold enough on Thursday, May 2, to hold the game this year.

The name game:

Good luck to the folks at Arlington Park in their quest to get everyone to use the preferred Arlington International Racecourse moniker. We all know people who will never call Willis Tower anything but Sears. Some Sox fans still stick by Comiskey Park. Likewise, it will always be the Northwest Tollway for many instead of the Jane Addams.

The name game II:

Unless the Cubs move to the suburbs, Wrigley Field will always be Wrigley and no one should ever dare to rename Soldier Field, though many locals mistakenly call it "Soldiers." Makes you wonder, though, about the smooth transition for the United Center. No one seems to call it the Chicago Stadium, which was demolished in 1995.

First-rate honor:

Talk about a "wow" factor. Not only are Waukegan Public Library officials to receive the nation's highest honor for service to the community, but the award will be presented at the White House on Wednesday by first lady Michelle Obama. The library is among 10 recipients of the 2013 National Medal for Museum and Library Service.

Sure signs of spring:

Arlington International Racecourse reopened Friday. Six Flags Great America reopens today. Sun and warm temps can't be far behind. Can they?

Get well soon, Sen. Murphy:

We heard a few jokes after state Sen. Matt Murphy of Palatine was taken away by ambulance with a severe knee injury he suffered in a softball game in Springfield Wednesday, but we don't see anything funny about it. He has our best wishes for a speedy recovery.

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